It can feel like the events, conferences, meetups and hackathons in Silicon Alley never end.
Now that it's Internet Week in New York City, chances are you or someone you know is either planning, watching, sitting on, moderating, streaming or avoiding a panel AT THIS VERY MOMENT.
So, why are we so obsessed with conferences in an age when everything can be done online? Maybe you're desperate to get out because your butt hurts from sitting at your desk all day (or your back hurts from being subjected to a poorly hacked standing desk).
But it's also likely that you fall into one or more of these four categories.
The Personal Brander
Every meetup, dinner or panel is a chance to spread the word about your startup. You pride yourself in having actually met most of the people you follow on Twitter. You stopped calling yourself a freelancer and started referring to yourself as an entrepreneur way back in 2009. There’s lots of Seth Godin on your Kindle. You understand the new paradigm of the workplace.
The Constant Content Maker
Conferences are your goldmines. You run around tweeting, blogging, interviewing and shooting video on your phone. You come armed with an extra battery pack, know where all the outlets are at every city venue and attack panelists the minute they walk offstage. You are a Social Media beast. Roar!
The Reality Checker
Going to events confirms that you do indeed know your things. You mostly sit in the audience, feeling annoyed, thinking, "I could be sitting up there. This is nothing new." You vow to stop attending so many conferences but then check Gary's Guide and feel a wave of FOMO wash over you.
The Mind Melder
Between managing "workflows" and sorting out the intern’s security clearance, you hardly have time to live up to your impressive title. Then you discovered that conferences are a chance for you to turn off your phone, sit quietly and actually use your brain. So once a week, you sneak out of the office, listen to some "thought leaders" and remind yourself why you got into tech/media, et cetera in the first place. It sure wasn’t to fill out timesheets for a living.
MY INTERNET WEEK EVENTS
Feel free to be one or more of these "types" at the events I'll be hosting, speaking, and moderating this week:
5/20 — Brand Camp
5/21 — WNYC Presents: STEM is the New Space Race
5/21 — Social Advertising: Sharing and Powering Relevant Conversations
5/22 — Multiscreen: Getting It Right